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5 Men Jailed for Killing Endangered Primates in Nghe An National Park

Sentences were given to five men in Nghe An Province for poaching a pair of langurs in Pu Mat National Park.

Dan Tri reported that the Con Cuong District People's Court gave a four-year punishment to Lo Van Hang, while Vieng Van Thuy got three years and Vieng Van Sinh was given 30 months. Meanwhile, both Lo Van Hau and Vi Van Hai received two years in jail. All of the men were charged for "violating regulations on management and protection of endangered, precious and rare animals."

While deliberating their jail time, the judge also considered the fact that these men have difficult backgrounds as they belong to an ethnic minority group.

According to VnExpress, the men had been part of a group that was invited to a workshop on wildlife protection regulations hosted by Pu Mat National Park and Save Vietnam's Wildlife (SVW), an anti-poaching non-profit organization. However, they eventually carried out a plan to kill and eat langur meat instead of attending the event.

On January 9, the men took five guns, five knives, ropes, and traps to the park. After two days of camping, Hang and Sinh found and killed two Phayre's langurs and brought the bodies back to camp afterward. They were discovered on the same afternoon by forest guards and SVW employees.

Director of SVW, Nguyen Van Thai, told the news source that this was the first illegal hunting case involving Pu Mat to be brought to trial since 2005, while Tran Xuan Cuong, director of Pu Mat National Park, stressed that all wild animal hunting activities are prohibited, as reported by Dan Tri.

The Phayre's langur, also known as Phayre's leaf monkey, is among the rare animals classified as Endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List. The species is threatened by loss of habitat and hunting.

Pu Mat National Park has made efforts to raise public awareness on protecting wildlife by holding 12 conferences since late 2018, and by cooperating with Save Vietnam's Wildlife to rescue and release wild animals from illegal trades.

[Photo via Wikimedia]

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